In addition to warmer weather, spring is when we welcome the beautiful blossoms that begin to appear outside our windows. These elements are just two reasons why you might want to say “I do” during a springtime nuptial celebration because with just a little bit of planning, you can enjoy the beauty of the season while throwing the best vegan wedding ever. In my book, Vegan Love: Dating and Partnering for the Cruelty-Free Gal, I devote a chapter to vegan nuptial celebrations. Here are five of my favorite vegan wedding ideas for spring.
1. Celebrating with the animals
Springtime can be ideal for holding your nuptial affair at a peaceful farm sanctuary. A number of such places offer their grounds for weddings, including Catskill Animal Sanctuary. At a sanctuary, not only are you in the company of rescued animals, but the money you spend on your venue benefits those in need. To further support the cause, you might want to request that guests make a donation to the sanctuary in lieu of physical gifts. For attire, incorporate a casual country vibe with a flowing cotton floral dress for the bride and relaxed twill pants and a cotton, button-down shirt for the groom (dressed up with a tie). And bring a pair of rubber boots—those pastures can get muddy.
2. Marrying among beautiful blooms
The arrival of spring means the blossoming of beautiful, fragrant, and colorful flowers, so why not get married among the beautiful blooms at a botanical garden? The Cheekwood Estate & Gardens in Nashville, TN includes vegan-friendly establishments on its preferred caterers list and provides tent rentals in case of spring rain showers. For attire, Tara Lynn Bridal offers vegan wedding gowns decorated with colorful floral designs that are ideal for a garden wedding. All of her dresses can be made vegan and are produced in her Vermont studio. And for the men, Tara Lynn also creates handsome hemp suits for grooms.
3. The traditional route
If a traditional reception-hall wedding is more your style, and you have a budget for it, there’s no reason to shy away from a grand affair. Many traditional halls—such as those in elegant hotels—come with a required caterer, and if you’re not impressed by the chef’s vegan offerings, ask if they can work with you to develop the superb plant-based menu of your dreams. Then, offer them recipes from your favorite vegan cookbook. When it comes time to pick the dress, you can find classic gowns made out of synthetic fabrics at many small bridal stores, while options for vegan tuxedos are located at Etuxedo.com. Our tip: don’t forget to add that Vitamix you’ve wanted for years to your wedding registry!
4. A homespun celebration
If you feel happiest in your backyard surrounded only by your closest friends and family, perhaps you want to celebrate your special day in the comfort of your home, where the possibilities are endless. You can work with your favorite vegan caterer, invite guests to dress as casual or formal as you desire, your companion animals can be present, and you can choose to celebrate in the early afternoon or dance late into the night. A surprise rain shower won’t ruin your day (but it might move the festivities into the living room), and you can hire your favorite makeup artist to work with your all-vegan makeup and brushes. A soft, flowing wedding dress from The Cotton Bride brings an elegant touch to an at-home affair, and any of their designs can be made vegan, while men can find wonderful options for cruelty-free wedding-appropriate suits at Brave GentleMan.
5. Mother nature
Spring is also a time when the earth comes to life with flowing brooks and budding trees. Because of this magnificent transformation, a wedding ceremony on a mountain top, beside a stream, or on your favorite hiking trail allows you to celebrate all that the planet has to offer, while honoring your love for another human being. For the reception, opt for a restaurant close to your ceremony location. Many Thai, Indian, and Mediterranean establishments can easily make their dishes vegan, if they aren’t already. Finally, encourage gifts that celebrate the nature-centricity of the nuptials by adding his and hers vegan sleeping bags to the wedding registry.
Maya Gottfried is the author of Our Farm: By the Animals of Farm Sanctuary and the forthcoming Vegan Love: Dating and Partnering for the Cruelty-Free Gal.
Photo courtesy of Dromhem & Tradgard Magazine